Scottish GIFTS for YOU – Travel blog Contest!

Contest Winner

Melinda, a wonderful reader in Norway, shared this photo of her family enjoying their gift package from RTG!

Update August 19th: Melinda’s package was mailed from London on our last day and she received it only 6 days later, then sent this great photo of she and her family with their goodies!

Update August 5th: Travel blog contest winner!! So, we wonder how much shipping will cost to …. NORWAY! Congratulations to Melinda, a fantastic reader in Norway! Melinda wins this overflowing gift bag of whisky marmalades, shortbread, celtic jewelry, Scottish teas, music, books, and more, plus a few special items we’ll find in Wales and England! THANKS to Melinda and all who made fantastic comments on our blog stories and on contest gift ideas! We used a random drawing program to select a winner from all comment entries and subscriber entries thru Aug 3rd on We appreciate you so much!

*We’re home in Colorado now and we’ll add stories soon about our fantastic experiences in the UK for the last 6 weeks!

Stories from the trip so far are: Edinburgh, Cruden Bay, Isle of Skye, and Wales.


Travel Blog Contest!

July and August: We’re loving this trip to Scotland! Also, looking forward to visiting Wales and England. To thank you for traveling along with us we’re having a contest! When considering what prize to offer you, we realized the most unique prize we can give our readers is a collection of gifts we buy during our travels. How do you like that idea?

CONTEST DETAILS  :  SEND Sheila shopping for YOU!

Win GIFTS from Scotland, Wales and England!

HOW: Choose from dozens of travel stories and hundreds of photos on this website. Comment as many times as you want! Subscribe to our future newsletter! 

Every COMMENT and each SUBSCRIBER is an entry!


WHEN: Now until July 31, AUGUST 3rd, 2015  

WHO: Anyone may enter from any location in the world where such contests are legal.

WINNER: One winner will be chosen by random drawing from ALL entries. Winner will be notified by email and announced on by August 3rd, 2015. (Our mothers are disqualified, esp. since we’re already bringing them gifts 🙂 )

Note: Sharing stories or photos on your Facebook page is encouraged and appreciated! Simply choose the Facebook symbol on any story/photo to share. For this contest, comments on this website, not on Facebook, are the ones being counted as entries. Fake or spam comments will not be counted and an email address is needed. Obviously, a mailing address will be requested from the contest winner. 🙂

Sheila (and Tom, when he’s not playing golf) will shop for interesting gifts as we travel thru Scotland, and add a few bonus gifts from Wales and England! We’ll create a care package to mail directly to our winner!

? What kinds of souvenirs do you like to pick up when you travel? What would you love to receive as a gift? Give us some ideas and you just might get it!


  1. Kathy
    August 4, 2015 at 12:10 AM — Reply

    I have been researching my ancestors from the Bruce clan. I would love to have some Bruce clan fabric for a dress , or a clan Kilt for my daughters fiance to wear for their wedding. That would make the wedding perfect!

    • Avatar photo
      August 22, 2015 at 3:03 PM — Reply

      Hi Kathy! Your note prompted me to look a bit into the Bruce clan. Looks their main lands in Annandale were in the Dumfries and Galloway area where we spent our honeymoon 5 years ago. You’ll be happy to know it’s a beautiful area, including Grey Mare’s Tail waterfall in Moffat! One idea you might like for your daughter’s wedding, since the full kilt ensemble can be crazy expensive, is a tartan sash for your daughter or for both of them or as accents. I was able to find some fabric online to make my sash, plus square pieces to go under the centerpieces and tartan ribbon to accent the flowers, plus. Enjoy helping your daughter plan!

  2. August 3, 2015 at 3:43 PM — Reply

    love to win the contest,, so love Scotland.

    • Avatar photo
      August 22, 2015 at 3:06 PM — Reply

      Hi Margaret! It’s truly a wonderful country in so many ways, isn’t it? Where did you visit?

  3. Sally MacDonald
    August 1, 2015 at 7:05 AM — Reply

    Hi. Would love anything from the Highlands maybe a cookbook. Doing my genealogy now and Scotland is coming up a lot, of course! Lol

    • Avatar photo
      August 1, 2015 at 2:18 PM — Reply

      Hi Sally! Cookbook is a great idea for those of you who cook! I love Scottish food, esp. shepherd’s and cottage pie. You’d have loved our wedding chef, Eric, the Celtic Caterer. Hope you enjoy learning about your genealogy. We drove thru Glencoe Thursday, the heartland of the MacDonald clan. Such a beautiful land and powerfully sad story.

  4. Tracy
    July 31, 2015 at 7:41 PM — Reply

    Shortbread!!! That’s a gift request not another nickname for Sheila ?

  5. Sherry
    July 31, 2015 at 12:26 PM — Reply

    All of the ideas sound great – mugs, music, and fabrics. What about specialty food items or sweets?

    • Avatar photo
      July 31, 2015 at 3:39 PM — Reply

      Hey Sherry! Yes, unless I eat them first. The Scottish shortbread is delicious and tablet (buttery fudge) is addictive! Of course, there’s always haggis, too 🙂

  6. Elaine MacDonald
    July 29, 2015 at 3:54 AM — Reply

    A piece of jewelry from HeatherGems in Pitlochry would make a wonderful gift for me!

    • Avatar photo
      July 31, 2015 at 12:18 PM — Reply

      Hi Elaine! I just looked up HeatherGems. Beautiful! Thanks for the suggestion. We drove thru Pitlochry going to Cairngorms National Park. Yesterday, we drove thru the incredibly beautiful MacDonald lands of Glencoe while listening to the powerfully sad Massacre of Glencoe song. Second visit to Glencoe and we love it!

  7. dee baggs
    July 28, 2015 at 7:01 PM — Reply

    Sheila, Christmas ornaments from this trip would be nice, plus a postcard or two!!

  8. dee baggs
    July 28, 2015 at 6:56 PM — Reply

    I can not get over the number of countries you two have visited so far. I am so glad you are enjoying Northern Scotland and Wales should be fun too!!

  9. July 28, 2015 at 7:15 AM — Reply

    Anything with Ross on it would be neat ancestors are from there

    • Avatar photo
      July 31, 2015 at 11:37 AM — Reply

      Ross! Hi Marda, our family names are Robertson and Armstrong. It’s interesting trying to learn about their history and decide what’s true vs. what’s legend 🙂

  10. Sandra H
    July 28, 2015 at 1:39 AM — Reply

    I’d say cookbooks and jewelry are my favourite souvenirs. They say the sense of smell and memory are closely linked so what better way to bring back fond memories of a place than to cook some of your favourite meals from your visit. And picking up something simple I can wear close to my heart like a necklace or a bracelet that stirs a memory every time I move my arm is another way to keep those places vivid in my mind.

  11. July 26, 2015 at 4:20 PM — Reply

    I’ve found nothing better than the unique music of any locale – to help recall the visit and people that performed it or gladly recommended it to convey their sentiments – and share a piece of their soul….every time I play it when I get back home.

    • Doug Sample
      July 27, 2015 at 7:41 AM — Reply

      Yes, I totally agree with you George! Music is the other “souvenir” I would always get when traveling. I’m proud to say I have the most eclectic CD collection right now because of it, and I love it! When I listen to a particular CD (even if years may have passed since the last time I listened to it), my brain is immediately flooded with fond memories and I am transported back in time to the place where I was, the people I was with, and things I was doing. And now, because of your post, I’m going to go get and listen to one of my memorable “souvenir” CDs right now so I can do some mind traveling/reminiscing while getting ready for work this morning! Thanks! 🙂

      • Doug Sample
        July 27, 2015 at 9:19 AM — Reply

        Okay … so this morning, I was transported back to 1993 when I would listen to Belgian singer Axelle Red’s “Sans Plus Attendre” CD. I was living and working in Brussels at the time her CD was released and I recall hearing it EVERYWHERE I went, especially her hit singles, Sensualité” (Sensuality) and “Elle Danse Seule” (She Dances Alone). Back then, there were no iPads, smart phones, streaming music or videos, etc., and the most current “in thing” was listening to your music while on the go on your portable Sony Discman. I did this every single day while taking the Brussels Metro and walking through the Grand Place during my commute to/from work. Life was good then! I thought I was so cool! LOL! ?

    • Avatar photo
      July 31, 2015 at 11:48 AM — Reply

      SO true, George! Thought about this yesterday as we drove thru gorgeous Glencoe with the music of celtic ballads and bagpipes playing! Great suggestion!

  12. Anna pearson buggs
    July 26, 2015 at 12:56 PM — Reply

    Hey Sheila,
    I bring back coffee mugs from my trips both domestic and foreign. My friends know I collect them and have brought some amazing ones from all over the world.

    • Avatar photo
      July 31, 2015 at 11:46 AM — Reply

      Anna! Don’t you just love reaching for a mug and thinking of that place/trip while sipping your coffee? Cool that your friends even get them for you! Mugs are great, except Tom just shakes his head and says…”Well, there’s no more room in the cupboard, so which ones will you replace?”

  13. Paige Kramer
    July 25, 2015 at 4:41 PM — Reply

    I love to get some fabric from the places I visit that are unique to the area. Then I can use it to make something for our home! Since I love to sew it is a fun way to remember places we have been.

    • Avatar photo
      July 31, 2015 at 11:40 AM — Reply

      Great idea, Paige! What kinds of momentos do you create with the fabric? Pillows? Wall pieces? My mum-in-law is a master quilt maker and my mum makes beautiful greeting cards, so fabric or interesting papers would be great for them. NOT that they need any more supplies! Right? My own craft room is quite neglected these days.

  14. Doug Sample
    July 23, 2015 at 5:00 AM — Reply

    For the last 20+ years, every time I travel to a new country, I always purchase Christmas ornaments specifically made in that country. This way, every year at Christmas time when I decorate my “international tree”, I can be reminded of all the interesting places I’ve travelled to and relive special memories.

    • Avatar photo
      August 1, 2015 at 7:30 AM — Reply

      Doug, we do, too! Unwrapping them each year and recalling the memories is so special. I love this tradition and Tom has come to love our travel tree more than our “regular” tree (although I do still love my Hallmark ornaments :-)) Sometimes it’s a bit tricky to find a good ornament that represents our experience, and once in awhile I miss out (never found one in Tahiti, so I have a necklace of shells I might make something with LOL). When I write an article about our travel tree I’d love for you to send a photo of some of your favorite ornaments you’ve collected!

      Also, I’d really LOVE to find a tree topper ANGEL during our travels if you or any of our readers have ideas!

  15. Dianne Fulwider
    July 22, 2015 at 6:18 PM — Reply

    hi! My favorite things to bring back from vacations is jewelry. I try to buy something memorable from each place. I have pearls from Hawaii, a gold ring from Ireland, a ring from Mexico. My “new” wedding ring is from the Bahamas! This last trip, to Spain, I purchased a pretty (but very cheap) ring that is typical of the workmanship around Toledo. I think the heat addled my brain- I wasn’t looking very hard.

    • Avatar photo
      August 1, 2015 at 7:16 AM — Reply

      Lovely idea, Dianne! Sounds like the heat in Spain was intense and I know exactly how that can melt my brain, too. I didn’t think I was a big jewelry collector until I realized several of my favorite pieces are those I’ve picked up when traveling! A beaded necklace and hair barrette from Belize, two necklaces with earrings from the Greek islands and a very simple whale’s tale carved from coconut from the Dominican Republic. Most are very inexpensive, but with personality. Tom even surprised me by buying a very nice, beautiful turtle necklace in the Caribbean for my birthday. Hmmm…guess it’s not entirely true to say he’s not patient about my shopping!

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